Echizen Soba no Sato(Echizen Soba Village)(越前そばの里) is in the city of Echizen, Fukui. There, you can eat Echizen Soba, buy souvenirs and gifts, see the soba manufacturing process, and experience making it. (If you want to know more about this, see the official English website.)
Echizen Soba is well known in Japan. (If you don’t know about it, see my previous post.)(Echizen soba: A Fukui specialty with a 400-year history)
Okamoto Shrine as well as Echizen Soba no Sato is located in the city of Echizen. I recommend that you go to both places. (If you don’t know about Okamoto Shrine, see my previous post.)(Okamoto Shrine, where the god of paper is enshrined and which has the most complex roof of all Japanese shrines)
It takes about 10 minutes from JR Takefu Station to Echizen Soba no Sato by taxi. There are a lot of taxis in front of JR Takefu Station, but there are none at Echizen Soba no Sato. When you need a taxi from Echizen Soba no Sato, you can ask the staff there to call you one.
I went to Echizen Soba no Sato(Echizen Soba Village).
First, I went round the soba factory. About 50,000 lengths of soba are made there per day. Staff weigh the soba and wrap it.
Next, I went to a gift shop where you can buy soba, origami, chopsticks, key-rings, chocolate, ice cream, and so on. I bought some soba rice crackers and some cookies.
I didn’t go to a restaurant, but you can get a lot of kinds of food there, such as Echizen Soba, Sauce Katsudon, tempura, and so on. The best selling dishes are the Echizen Soba and Sauce Katsudon sets. Sauce Katsudon is like Fukui’s soul food. (For more information, see my previous post.)(Sauce katsudon: Fukui’s soul food)
Finally, I made some soba. More than 15,000 people do this every year. However, the staff explain how to make it in Japanese, so if you don’t speak Japanese, you might find it difficult to follow. I’ll explain what happens.
I made soba from buckwheat flour. I poured some water into the buckwheat flour and mixed it. I kneaded it with both hands. Next, I stretched it with a large stick. After that, I cut it. Lastly, the staffs boiled it.
I enjoyed eating the soba together with others in the group.
If you get the chance, you should go to this village.